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Private Donald Currie

 
 

Claro Times 20th February 1915

Photos The Currie family of Harrogate, is a notable one, no less than nine of its members serving their King and Country. There are six sons, and three sons-in-law, their photographs being given above. From left to right the names are : Private Arthur Currie, Grenadier Guards; Private A Currie, "Bantams"; Driver Donald Currie, Royal Field Artillery, Prisoner of War; Corporal W Currie, at he Front; Private Douglas Currie, Cameron Highlanders (Canadian Contingent); Private Alfred Currie, Grenadier Guards; Trooper Walter Voakes, Yorkshire Hussars; Harry Hemmingway, "Hawke", Naval Brigade (interned in Holland); and Private Tom Kendall, 8th West Yorks.

 

Claro Times 20th February 1915

Five sons of Mrs Currie, 5 Denmark Terrace, Harrogate, are on active service, and the sixth is a scout who is doing duty in connection with the York and Lancaster Regiment. She has also three sons-in-law with the colours. Corporal William Currie joined the army about twelve years ago, and is in the Royal Field Artillery, having been in France since the war broke out.

Privates Arthur, Alfred, and Douglas Currie have been in Canada several years, and the first two have joined the Grenadier Guards, whilst Douglas has joined the Cameron Highlanders. Alfred has already returned to England, and is on Salisbury Plain in training. The other two are undergoing training in Canada, and will be transported to England with the third Canadian Contingent. All three have followed the trade of plasterer, two being at Calgary and one at Winnipeg.

Driver Donald Currie joined the Royal Field Artillery just a year ago, and on the outbreak of war went to France with the First Expeditionary Force. He was reported missing on the 24th August, on the retirement from Mons, but it transpired later that he had been taken prisoner of war, when a body of French were taken at Maubeuge. He is now a prisoner of war at Doeberitz. Two postcards have been received from him, and he says he is all right and quite well, and has received the parcels sent to him.

Donald and William Currie formerly worked at the Post Office.

Three sons-in-law of Mrs Currie are also on active service Private T Kendall, 8th West Yorkshires, Private W Voakes, Yorkshire Hussars, and H Hemingway, of the Hawks Battalion, Naval Brigade. Voakes is well known in Harrogate as a footballer, having played for the Northern Union and the Harrogate Old Boys' Clubs. He has done good service for the Northern Union team this season, and was playing on Saturday, having got leave for this purpose.

Harry Hemingway took part in the defence of Antwerp, and was in the party who were driven across the frontier into Holland, and is there interned.

 

Harrogate Herald - 9th January 1918

W H Breare letter

Other Mons heroes include Harry Petty (RE), son of Mr and Mrs J R Petty, who were about one of the first patriotic families we had the pleasure of chronicling; Driver Donald Currie, son of Mrs Currie, of Denmark Terrace, who had five or six sons serving, one being killed, and Donald is a prisoner in Germany; Sergeant-Farrier J Bowgett, a Starbeck man, who, I believe, was a policeman at Bridlington prior to joining the Colours; Private John G Swales (Royal Scots Greys), of Russell Street, Oatlands Mount, who has been wounded twice and is now in hospital at Halifax; Private Richard Carter, Coldstream Guards, who is a prisoner in Switzerland, and whose sister, Mrs J T Johnson, resides at Bachelor Gardens; Cadet H Bryant, who landed at Ostend in October, 1914, and was with the 7th Divisional Column up to Ghent; Private G Graham (KOYLI), who was wounded and taken prisoner at Mons. He is the son of Mrs E Graham, 10 King's Road, and now at Chemnitz; Private H G Smith (Dragoon Guards), who is now in hospital in Leeds; Second Lieutenant L A Shipman, who also received the meritorious medal, son of Mr and Mrs Shipman, of Willow Grove, Bilton, who have other sons in the Army and Navy.

 

Harrogate Herald - 25th December 1918

W H Breare letter

Then I have had in the two brothers Currie, Private Alexander and Driver Donald. They live at 5 Denmark Street. Alex has been twelve months out, wounded and gassed on the 28th January, 1918. This affected his voice, and he couldn't speak for three months. Ben Smith, of Hurstleigh Terrace, was with Currie, and Micky Brain, of Denmark Street. There were six of the Currie boys in the Army - one, Arthur, with the Canadians, was killed April 16th; Driver Donald was taken on the 8th September, 1914, at the fall of Manbenge. The town surrendered on the 7th September, after ten days' bombardment. In 1914 his treatment was severe, but better later. With him at the same camp was Second Lieutenant B Archer, under-chef at the Hydro, and Lieutenant Frank Wilson, and eight or nine other Harrogate boys. They were all at Mainz. Lieutenant Colonel Bousfield, who was once in charge of the 1/6th West Yorks, was likewise a prisoner there. At the same time as those boys called, Private Fred Harwood, of the 29th Battalion Canadian Infantry, came. He had been out two years and eight months, and is the son of Mr and Mrs Harwood, engine driver for the North Eastern, of 99 The Avenue, Starbeck. Harwood was in the Giessen camp. He was taken at St Eloi in the battle of the craters. With Harwood was Private W Tindale, 3rd Battalion, Toronto Regiment. He was taken prisoner on the 24th April, 1915. Been three years and seven months out. Captured at St Julien. Tindale was in Harrogate as a guest of Fred Harwood

 

Harrogate Herald - 9th October 1929

The interment took place at Stonefall Cemetery on Monday of Mr Donald Currie, who passed away at his home, 6 Claro Avenue, Harrogate.

Mr Currie was well known as a member of the Old Contemptibles Association, and was, up to quite a recent date, the Hon Secretary of the Black Swan Bowling Chub. Going out to France with the 2nd Division in August, 1914, he was wounded and taken prisoner the following month, remaining in Germany until 1919.

The funeral was of a semi-military character. The coffin, on which his medals were laid, was borne by his comrades of the Association, and was draped with the Union Jack. The service was conducted by the Rev F W Bracecamp, MC. Among the many mourners were : Mrs D Currie (Widow); Mr & Mrs W Currie, Mr & Mrs H Currie, Mr & Mrs Alf Currie, Mrs Kendall (Sister); Mr & Mrs H Hemingway (Sister & Nephew); Mr & Mrs W Voakes (Sister & Brother-in-Law)

[Several others listed]

 

 

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